School tap water within safe lead limits, SD60 says

School District 60 says its drinking water is safe after a national study found high levels of lead in tap water in homes and at public institutions across Canada.

Recent tests from January to April of this year found school district sites within safe limits, and ongoing testing continues, Superintendent Stephen Petrucci said Wednesday.

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"The school district is aware of a recent Global News report that contains information on lead contamination levels in water at various public institutions across Canada. The lead levels included in the news report reflect historical test results obtained from the BC government," Petrucci said in a statement. 

"This report does not reflect current lead levels at our facilities. SD60 has an ongoing testing and mitigation regime to ensure levels are in compliance and within safe limits."

Lead levels should not exceed 0.005 milligrams per litre (mg/L) under federal Guidelines for Canadian Drinking Water Quality

The City of Fort St. John publishes its treated water quality test results online. The latest results from Oct. 1 found 0.00029 mg/L of total lead.

In 2016, the school district implemented a water line flushing program at Taylor Elementary School after sampling found elevated levels of lead, and did the same for Bert Bowes, Ecole Central, Upper Halfway, and Wonowon schools.

Peace River North test results:

The following information comes from an investigative report by Global News, the Toronto Star, and the Institute for Investigative Journalism.

The lead levels reported below "reflect test results obtained from the BC government from January 2016 to March 2018 and from January 2019 to April 2019 and may not reflect current lead levels" at the facilities, their disclaimer reads. "Values above 10 ppb (or 5 ppb after March 2019) required immediate action and has likely been addressed."

• Alwin Holland Elementary School 

(0 out of 6 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Alwin Holland Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

2 Parts Per Billion (Location: Gym Fountain): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2018: This facility's highest reading of 2 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Baldonnel Elementary School

(0 out of 3 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Baldonnel Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

4 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staff Room): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

October 1, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 4 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Bert Ambrose Elementary School

(0 out of 4 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Bert Ambrose Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

3 Parts Per Billion (Location: Canteen): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 3 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Bert Bowes Middle School

(1 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Bert Bowes Middle School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is above the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

10 Parts Per Billion (Location: Gym Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 10 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Buick Creek School

(0 out of 3 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Buick Creek School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

3 Parts Per Billion (Location: Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 3 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Charlie Lake Elementary School

(1 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Charlie Lake Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is above the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

8 Parts Per Billion (Location: Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 8 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Clearview Elementary-Jr

(0 out of 6 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Clearview Elementary-Jr from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

5 Parts Per Billion (Location: North Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

October 1, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 5 ppb was recorded on this date.

• CM Finch Elementary

(1 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Cm Finch Elementary from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is above the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

8 Parts Per Billion (Location: Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 8 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Dr Kearney Middle School

(1 out of 4 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Dr Kearney Middle School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

7 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staffroom): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 7 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Duncan Cran Elementary School

(0 out of 3 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Duncan Cran Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

1 Parts Per Billion (Location: Gym Fountain): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2018: This facility's highest reading of 1 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Ecole Central Elementary School

(1 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Ecole Central Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is above the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

13 Parts Per Billion (Location: Gym Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 13 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Energetic Learning Campus

(0 out of 1 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Energetic Learning Center from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

0 Parts Per Billion (Location: Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

September 7, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 0 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Hudson's Hope Elementary

(0 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Hudson's Hope Elementary from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

4 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staffroom): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 4 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Key Learning Centre

(0 out of 1 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Key Learning Center from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

5 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staffroom): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 5 ppb was recorded on this date.• 

• Key Learning Centre

(0 out of 1 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at The Key Learning Centre from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

4.39 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staff Sink): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

February 6, 2019: This facility's highest reading of 4.39 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Northern BC Distance Education

(0 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Northern Bc Distance Education from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

5 Parts Per Billion (Location: Mens Washroom): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 5 ppb was recorded on this date.

• North Peace Senior Secondary

(0 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at North Peace Senior Secondary from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

2 Parts Per Billion (Location: Gym Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 2 ppb was recorded on this date.

• North Peace Secondary School

(0 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at North Peace Secondary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

0 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staff Room): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2018: This facility's highest reading of 0 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Prespatou Elementary-Secondary

(0 out of 4 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Prespatou Elementary-Secondary from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

2 Parts Per Billion (Location: Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 2 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Robert Ogilvie Elementary School

(1 out of 4 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Robert Ogilvie Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

6 Parts Per Billion (Location: Main Hallway Fountain): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2018: This facility's highest reading of 6 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Taylor School

(1 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Taylor School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is above the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

8 Parts Per Billion (Location: Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 8 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Taylor Elementary School

(0 out of 1 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Taylor Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

5 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staff Room): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

October 1, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 5 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Tech Ed/Aboriginal Education Centre

(0 out of 2 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Tech Ed/ Aboriginal Education Ctr from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

2 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staffroom): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 2 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Upper Halfway Elementary

(1 out of 3 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Upper Halfway Elementary from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

14 Parts Per Billion (Location: Staffroom): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 14 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Upper Pine Elementary

(0 out of 4 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Upper Pine Elementary from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

3.15 Parts Per Billion (Location: Primary Sink): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

February 6, 2019: This facility's highest reading of 3.15 ppb was recorded on this date.

• Wonowon Elementary School

(1 out of 3 tests ABOVE 5 ppb) Total percentage of published lead tests conducted at Wonowon Elementary School from 2017 - 2019 that exceeded the updated federal safety recommendation of 5 ppb. This is below the provincial public school average of 36.7 per cent over the same time period.

13 Parts Per Billion (Location: Hallway): The highest lead test result recorded at this school. Levels above 5 ppb are not recommended by Health Canada.

March 5, 2017: This facility's highest reading of 13 ppb was recorded on this date.

Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at editor@ahnfsj.ca.

[Reader's Note: Article updates to recent changes to guidelines for maximum acceptable concentrations of lead in drinking water from 0.010 mg/L to 0.005 mg/L, adds testing results.]

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